Steps for Selling a House: Preparing for the Showing

Preparing for a house showing is one of the most important steps for selling a house. You want your home to make a good impression on potential buyers, and for the buyers to be able to picture what their lives would be like in the house.

Here’s some steps for to get you started from The National Association of Realtors:


Remove excess clutter and furniture, and pack it away in storage. Clear off the counters and organize the garage. A neat and tidy appearance will make your home feel more spacious.

Make the most of natural light

Clean your windows and screens, and let natural light highlight your wood floors and other attractive features in your home. Consider putting up sheer curtains to let in more light and show off your view.

Deep clean

Consider hiring a cleaning service to make your home look its best. Remember to clean the walls and/or put on a fresh coat of paint.

Give it a whiff

Unpleasant odors in your home will leave a lasting impression on potential buyers – and not a good one. Clean your carpeting and drapes. Let the house air out. Use a wax warmer or oil diffuser. For stubborn kitchen smells, try putting cotton balls soaked in vanilla extract or orange juice in your fridge. The National Association of Realtors also suggests boiling lemon juice in your microwave and running it through your dishwasher, and putting lemon rinds in the garbage disposal.

Make repairs

Get the WD40 out for that squeaky door, change any dead lightbulbs, fix the leaky faucet. These may seem like minor things, but you want to give the buyer the impression that your home is well-maintained.

Tidy up the yard

To give your home curb appeal remember to mow your lawn, clear off leaves, sticks and other debris, trim the hedges. Consider placing some potted flowers near the front door.

Add personal touches

When staging your home, you want it to look lived in, but not too lived in. Set the kitchen table with nice dishes, put a vase of fresh cut flowers on the counter, add logs to the fireplace, or some accent pillows to the couch.

Spruce up the bathroom

Make sure your toiletries are out of sight. Put up a new shower curtain, some nice smelling hand soap and fresh towels.

Set the thermostat

You want to keep your home at a comfortable temperate for any potential buyers. Because hot air rises, for a summer showing, close the air vents on the first floor so more AC will be produced upstairs; in the winter, close the vents on the second floor so more heat is produced on the first floor.


Last but certainly not least, step out of the house before the showing to avoid any awkwardness. Take your pets with you, if possible or bring them to a neighbor. If you must leave the pet(s) at home, confine them to one room or crate them, and be sure to let the agent know where they are located. Be sure to secure your valuables and medications in a safe place before you leave.

For more information on steps for selling a house, check out our article on How to Sell Your Home in Today’s Market

Search All Listings

Search MLS listings directly on our website to find the most up-to-date residential homes, land, farms, multi-family and commercial properties for sale. Looking for a rental? We have rental listings too!